Africa On the Move!

Youth v

oicesfrom the 17

th

Ordinary

Session of the African Union

Issue 2

June 30, 2011

In This Issue

Youth and the AUC
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Youth and the AUC

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High Level Media Colloquium on Youth Employment A Grande Debate

The Youth Division under the Department of Human Resources

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Quote of the Day "...what we need is little more action and a little less strategising." ± MelesZenawi

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Media Colloquium on Youth Employment
BerukMengistu and Eden Yohannes Seventeen members of the African Union Youth Volunteer Corps trainees took part on a high-level media colloquium on youth employment. The colloquium took place at the Sipopo Conference Centre on June 29th 2011. The panel for the colloquium included Mr. Charles Dan, Assistant Director General of the International Labour Organization; MsMosunUmoru, a Young Agro Entrepreneur from Nigeria; MrKariukiGathitu, a Young Innovator from Kenya; Mr. Andy NziendguiNziendgui representing the pan African Youth Union; Ms. JanahNcube, Executive Director of the Centre for Citizen·s Participation in the Africa Union; and Ms Rosemary Museminali, representative of UNAIDS to the African Union and UNECA. The first half of the colloquium was chaired by His Excellency Mr. Jean Pierre Ezin, the AU Commissioner Department for Human Resource, Science and Technology. Dr. RaymondeAgossou facilitating the discussion offered a word of welcome to the youth represented, the media and the panelists. Mr. Ezin, in his welcoming speech praised the entrepreneurial effort that some youth are doing in an effort to employ not only themselves but also others. He said that it is high time for the youth to innovaterather than to simply seek employment. Ms. MosunUmoru in her speech said that African youth have the capability to employ themselves but they face several problems such as access to land and access to capital. She added that most youth entrepreneurs are still dependent on micro financing but the challenge is that these institutions usually have high interest rates. Furthermore, she stated that the current educational system in Africa does not prepare young people for global employmentmarket. Mr. KariukiGathitu, a young innovator, insisted that the youth have passion and vigourrequired and that they only need support. He urged the public to look beyond age and see the capabilities that lie within. All panelists were given a chance to express their opinions on the issue. UNFPA representative and four other young people from the audience gave their comments before the closing remarks were given by the Director of the AU HRST.

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The Grand Debate
Intergenerational
Dialogue between Heads of State and Government Youth Representatives on Accelerating Youth Empowerment for Sustainable Development.
YemisrachGebruWolde The 17 Ordinary Session of the African Union has been officially opened today, 30th June 2011. The theme of this Summit is ´Accelerating Youth Empowerment for Sustainable Developmentµ. As such, it is anticipated that the decisions made at this Heads of State and Government gathering is to highly reflect on youth participation. In addition to that the importance of inclusion in realising sustainable development and enacting the Plan of Action for the Decade of Youth (20092018) was dubbed paramount. Following the official opening ceremony of the event, a discussion on the theme is expected to commence with presentations by the Commissioner for HRST, Mr. JeanPierre Ezin and the Prime Minister of Ethiopia H.E. Ato. MelesZenawi. According to the programme, interventions and responses will ensue by other speakers. The main aim of this interactive session is to structure the session that comes after it a Grand Debate. This panel will be an intergenerational dialogue between selected Heads of State and Government and eight youth representative; Ms.ClotildeAbeso, the Assistant Chair of Equatorial Guinean of the National Youth Council; Mr.AmrAwad, a Public Health Officer from Egypt; Mr. Mehdi Ben
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Mr.KariukiGathuti, a young innovator from Kenya, Ms.MosunUmoru; an AgroEntrepreneur from Nigeria; Mr. Ben Duntoye, Ms.TendaiWenyika and Mr. Andy Roland NziendguiNziendgui representing the Pan-African Youth Union. TheDebate is expected to provideanewapproachtoguide the immediateimplementation ofconcrete andtangible It is anticipated that an emphasis will given to employment and innovation as a means of achieving sustainabledevelopment for the African continent.

Further, the African Youth Charter and the Plan of Action for the Decade of the Youth will be prioritised in the discussions. This is expected to direct and identify the key actions that the Heads of State and Government must commit themselves to. Most importantly, it is imperative for the Heads of State and Government to decide and take concrete actions in their respective countries to achieve the goals related to youth development in Africa.

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